About 65% of the IGAD region landmass is Arid and Semi-arid Lands (ASALs) characterized by low erratic rainfall with vast rangelands. The IGAD region suffers from the severe effects of climate variability and change. The recurring and severe droughts coupled by poor land management practices have caused widespread rangelands degradation leading to economic hardship for pastoralist and agro-pastoralists. The impacts of climate change have been more severe because of inadequate rangelands management practices, spread of invasive species and poor water management. Under these circumstances, livestock feed availability throughout the year in ASALs remains a major challenge and is most likely going to get worse. Therefore, unless appropriate steps are urgently taken to sustainably manage the rangelands resources, the livelihoods of the many pastoral and agro-pastoral communities residing in ASALs of IGAD region will continue being disrupted.
ICPALD/IGAD, with financial support from the World Bank through Regional Pastoral Livelihoods Resilience Project (RPLRP), developed the regional rangelands management strategy in consultation with the member states. This draft strategy was reviewed and validated by relevant public and private sectors; civil societies; universities and research centres involved in the areas and partners.
Mr Ernest Mbogo representing the director of animal production and Marketing made the opening remark. Welcome remarks were also made by Dr. Solomon Munyua, the Director of ICPALD.
Recommendations and Way Forward
- Government and CSOs should advocate and support for land right, true value of rangeland resources, value addition of rangeland products (Honey, gums and resins, artisan and minerals in the rangelands) and enhance extension and advisory services for pastoralists.
- IGAD should support member state agencies in advocating for improved investment in rangeland management research.
- Value chain development should be emphasized in the rangeland management strategy and member state policies
- Stakeholders should advocate for repositioning of fodder value chain by strengthening investments and agribusiness enterprises
- We need to strengthen coordination and linkages between stakeholders in each country through formation and strengthening of national feed and range platform to share good practises, lessons and enhance complimentarities and synergies.
- IGAD and member states should mobilize resources from government and partners and invest in scaling up of proven technologies in rangeland management.
- IGAD/ICPALD, Member states and partners should generate some evidence to show the benefits of improving rangelands and do raise awareness on existing tools and instruments to enable mobility continued in coordinated manner and in peaceful co-existence among pastoral groups.
ICPALD/IGAD expresses appreciation to the World Bank for funding this activity through RPLRP project.